#3 CB Deatrick Nichols - Senior, 5’10”, 189 lbs.
2016 Stats: Deatrick started all 13 games, one of only four defensive players who did it. He finished with 49 tackles, and led the team with four interceptions and seven pass breakups. Nichols grabbed two interceptions against SMU, and he saved USF’s 49-42 win over Memphis with three straight defensive plays at the goal line on the Tigers’ final possession. Nichols was named second team all-American Athletic Conference at the end of the season.
He also wore an excessive number of wrist bands:
I know the NFL is on fire right now, but can we take a second to discuss Deatrick Nichols player wearing SIX wristbands? pic.twitter.com/bwX29HkQmb— Luke Carlton (@ljacarlton) August 11, 2017
2015 Stats: Nichols settled right into the starting lineup and started all 13 games at cornerback. He logged 62 tackles, 8.5 for loss, and led the team with four interceptions. Deatrick scored USF’s only defensive touchdown of the 2015 season with a 29-yard interception return against Cincinnati. He also had one sack, broke up five passes, forced two fumbles, and recovered one. Nichols was named first team all-American Athletic Conference last year, and he received USF’s Most Improved Player award after the season.
2014 Stats: Nichols appeared in eight games as a true freshman, with his only start of the year coming at SMU. He didn’t record any interceptions or pass breakups, but he did make a total of eight tackles.
How He Came To USF: Deatrick played cornerback and ran track at powerhouse Miami Central High School. He made 105 career tackles, 12 interceptions, and two forced fumbles for the Rockets despite missing much of his senior year due to injury. Central won three state titles during Nichols’s time there, including each of his last two seasons. USF had a bit of an advantage in recruiting Deatrick because his former high school coach was Telly Lockette, who joined Willie Taggart’s staff in 2013. He committed in May of that year and signed onto USF’s 2014 recruiting class over offers from Auburn, Clemson, Georgia, LSU, Tennessee, and UCLA.
Recruiting Rankings: Nichols was a three-star prospect on all the major recruiting sites.
Follow Him On... There’s a dispute among the TDS staff on whether or not Nichols is @Good_vibess3 on Twitter. I think it is, but Nate is almost positive it isn’t. Probably safer to follow him on Instagram, at d.nichols.jr.